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Preparing for a hurricane - home and office - Round 2

By Darryl~ Moderator ·
08/26/2009 - NOAA just upgraded the latest depression in the Atlantic to Tropical Storm Danny. This storm looks like it will bother a few more people as it is forecast to brush the coasts of NC, CT, RI, MA, NH & ME this weekend before making landfall in the Canadian Mairtimes.

So Nova Scotia gets to have a replay of "last" Sunday, "this" Sunday, except instead of brushing the coast, it's forecast to come in the Bay of Fundy which puts Truro on the "windy" side.


08/24/2009 - We just received a lot of wind and rain but not much damage in our area.

****something we failed to check before the storm****

We didn't check the UPS's - 3 failed to function proper.
One took out the phone system & it had to be reprogrammed before we had phones this morning. The other 2 were non-critical systems which just prevented backups to the GIS & AutoCAD servers.

Still lots of waves at Peggy's Cove :)

08/23/2009 - Noon Sunday....

It's here....vertical rain and all.
Looks like it will touch Halifax this afternoon (60 miles from Truro)

For those interested in seeing some wave action, below is a link to Peggy's Cove Lighthouse just outside Halifax. Set the refresh rate for 2s. The sites been coming and going, they've been getting some lightening strikes so they may have power issues.


08/21/2009 - The US & Canadian Hurricane centers just put us under a Tropical Storm Warning & Hurricane Watch so I guess we're not going to avoid this one.

The plan is to leave the servers up while we still have power. The remote sites (water treatment plants, etc) are "on their own" unless major damage happens at one of them, they all have generators to keep the systems running but we'll lose data if we shut down our servers at the courthouse (the municipality's office).

Two of us are within walking distance to the office (actually, that's my "safe place" so I may be there anyway).

They are forecasting a storm surge at high tide. We're at the end of the Bay of Fundy with the highest tides in the world & the highest tides of the year occur tomorrow during the surge...about 3" of rain should be down by then with another 3" possible after (can you spell disaster?).Flooding "shouldn't" be an issue at the office but it is for me at home...I have a walking route that can keep me on "high ground" and the other person walks "from" high ground....just much further....we're it for the IT dept. as the Network Admin is too far out of town, she can connect remotely if we have power.

The UPS is good for about 4 hours but no A/C power backup....our current temperature is 91.3 and a "feel like" of 112.6....tomorrow is supposed to be a little cooler.

Any suggestions from the people in the Southern US? (thanks Nick & jck, I read yours & it was you have anything to add?).

And yes Sonja, my camera batteries are charged...I'll get some before & afters....maybe even the TR flag flying "during".


08/20/2009 - Well the first "bad boy" of the season is planning to pay Nova Scotia a visit on Sunday, his name is Bill ( now they say the "best case" is winds of about 75 mph & 4 inches of rain....we won't talk about the "worst case" right now, but it's winds about 140 mph (I could race Scummy on his bike with a skateboard & a sail ) and a lot of damage.

So we do the normal things at home....have 3 20lb tanks of propane filled, lots of water, food, cash, etc.

At work, we make sure we get a full backup & put the tapes in the vault at the bank....we'll shut down "non-critical" systems Friday before leaving work....everyone will have a fully charged cell phone. We have a disaster recovery plan that is up-to-date & we follow it.

What does everyone else do to prepare when you "know" a disaster is most likely going to happen?

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It was the year before that we got pounded

by Darryl~ Moderator In reply to 2004 here in FL

It all started March 31, 2003....we had this massive rain system that moved in & melted all the snow....then the ice started to jam in the rivers...what a mess! You'd really have to see it to believe it. Below's a link to a picture of the Tim Horton's about 300 yards from here.

Then along came hurricane Juan in September....because of all the flooding a couple months before, the trees didn't have a chance to get solid rooting again...there were giant elm trees down all over was another mess.

Then some say a nor'easter we had actually started the 2004 hurricane season you mentioned. In February, we had a blizzard that was just dumped 3' of snow in a day and wind gusts around 95 mph....there were 20' drifts everywhere....they brought in these big snowblowers they use up north to clear the roads. People dubbed it "White Juan" because it really was like a hurricane in the winter.

That was a bad year....I don't want to do that again.

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I can imagine

by jck In reply to It was the year before th ...

I remember when I was helping my father finish moving to his last assignment with the US government. It was 1993, and we were racing to beat this blizzard that had dumped several feet of snow and ice across N. California, Utah, Colorado and Kansas. We got him to Missouri, then started home and got tired about 3:30am. We stopped in Springfield, Missouri for the night. Went to bed about 4am. Woke up about 8am, and there was 4 inches of ice and 3 inches of snow already and it was still falling.

We got onto I-44 heading west, and there were tons of cars and haulers all in the ditches. We were doing 25mph all the way to the west side of Joplin before it cleared and we could do 60mph.

I never wanna do a blizzard again. Well, unless I can get snowed in with a nice, pretty woman and a few cases of select drinks and firewood for a fireplace.

And, a guitar and piano. lol

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Power's not a problem

by CharlieSpencer In reply to 2004 here in FL

You can always get a generator. The problem with the power being out is it makes it impossible for the water supply system to function. No filters, no pumps, etc.

You can have a generator on stand-by in the garage for years, and siphon gas out of the car if you get desperate. You can only store so much water, and you really don't want to drink it after its been in storage for more than a year.

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Fill the bathtub

by JamesRL In reply to Power's not a problem

Our water supplies have backup generators intended to support the system for an hour or so. If we think its going to be a long one we fill up the bathtub.

I've thought about getting a rainbarrel hooked up to the downspouts, that should be able to hold a significant amount.

We would drink the bottled water first, using the bathtub or rainbarrel water for flushing toilets(if its yellow...), washing etc. If we get desparate we can filter the rainbarrel through the Brita.


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Local university had a couple of fountains.

by CharlieSpencer In reply to Fill the bathtub

Like you said, I wouldn't drink it but it would flush the john and rinse out our clothes.

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I'd boil it first

by cmiller5400 In reply to Fill the bathtub

to kill all parasites, bacteria etc before I'd filter it.

Never can be too safe, well unless you want to spend quality time on the potty.. ]:)

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Lost power for 2 days in the last ice storm here (2004?)

by NickNielsen In reply to Fill the bathtub

Slept in the living room with the fireplace and still froze my buns. But I got a hot shower each morning!

Love my gas water heater... B-)

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We are all electric.

by JamesRL In reply to Lost power for 2 days in ...

So when we have no power, we have no comforts.

You know that non-sealed fireplaces actually make the house colder right? Mythbusters did a segment to show the effects. They don't burn efficiently, they draw in alot of air, and that means sucking outside air in.


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Not a sealed fireplace

by NickNielsen In reply to Lost power for 2 days in ...

Not even a damper in the flue, though. Just tile cap and a screen across the top of the flue to keep the squirrels out.

If you were within about 4 feet of it, it wasn't too bad, but anything more than that, even with the living room closed off from the rest of the house was noticeably cooler.

Considering investing in a 5KW generator so I can power the gas pack when SCE&G can't.

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Yeah, 2004

by CharlieSpencer In reply to Lost power for 2 days in ...

The house I was in at that time didn't have a gas water heater, but it had a gas fireplace! When we moved to a new house later that year, I specified the logs as part of the construction. Plus the cat likes them a LOT.

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